R. Marshall Rainey • Partner
I have attended Charles’ CME course several times over the past 12 years. I find these courses to be informative and extremely helpful to my practice. Charles is always on top of the latest developments in mediation as well as the latest cases and opinions impacting the practice. I always appreciate the comments and friendly interaction of the attendees who have very different practices and experiences with mediation. Thank you, Charles, for making this CME requirement so enjoyable and educational.
I think that I express the sentiment of the entire class when I say that your presentation was first rate, and that you made the rather intensive process very interesting and informative. I will recommend your course every chance that I get.
Just wanted to take a moment here this morning to echo what’s already been expressed by others, to wit: This mediation certification class was one of the most rewarding and interesting seminars I have ever participated in. (And I’ve been to a bunch!) Many thanks to our excellent leader Charles Castagna and to all the obviously intelligent, energetic (and feisty) participants. All the best to all of you.
Thank you again for offering such an amazing circuit civil mediation training course. I learned more than I ever thought that I would. You gave excellent presentations, scheduled a wonderfully diverse group of experienced mediators to speak to the group, and provided invaluable feedback and insight. Your perspective as a highly experienced mediator made all the difference. I really enjoyed hearing about your experiences as a mediator and felt very lucky to have the opportunity to take your course. I would highly recommend your mediation training course to any attorney interested in becoming a circuit civil mediator.
"I've been through a lot more than the mandatory CLE of two states since 1979, and I have to rank yours on top. I've served as a pro tem judge, ALJ, and ADR provider, but you've opened my eyes wider than they've ever been."
I have taken several live CME courses from the Charles N. Castagna Mediation, Inc. group. I would recommend Mr. Castagna’s courses to any active mediators, as well as to any practitioners who simply wish to gain more insight into the mediation process. Mr. Castagna puts on a top-quality presentation through his lecturing, as well as via the other professionals who he enlists to present on various select topics. His extensive mediation knowledge and experience are only matched by his commitment to keeping his courses on track to be respectful of the participants’ time.
Better than expected. I brought work to do and never touched it.
Charles Castagna’s course is, simply stated, spectacular. Thoroughly professional, always prepared, conscientious to a fault, and invariably polite and friendly, Charles manages to turn what at first sight seemed to be an exceedingly long and possibly boring program into a delightful and very satisfying experience.
As someone with extensive experience in mediation – but solely as an attorney representing clients – I was stricken by the contrast between the manner in which mediators that I have worked with in the past conducted their mediations and the substantive, focused manner in which this course taught us to conduct mediations in the future. I only wish that all mediators could have the fortune to be trained by someone like Charles Castagna. I highly recommend the course to anyone who admires excellence.
Charles - thank you for a super 40 hours (precisely!). You made the hours fly by, and the class entertaining and educational!
With very best wishes,
Kathy Andersen MPA, Harvard
I'd like to thank you for my experience in the course. You made it fun and interesting while still focusing on the task at hand. I commend you for your professionalism.
I thought the class was really great. You kept the course moving and the class engaged. It was actually a course of self-discovery.
Craig H. Coller, Asssitant County Attorney, Miami-Dade County Attorney’s Office
I have attended Charles Castagna's CME courses multiple times. Charles has an impressive background and extensive experience in Mediation which greatly enhances the programs. I have attended other similar courses, but find this one is the best! Charles has an engaging and easy to listen to style that makes for an enjoyable and educational experience. The guest speakers for domestic violence and diversity training were excellent as well. I would highly recommend these courses for all levels of Mediators.
M.J. McDonald, Esq. Wilkes & McHugh, P.A. Tampa
I recently completed the Circuit Civil Mediation Training Class with Charles Castagna and recommend it very highly for not only the quality of the material as presented but for the environment that Mr. Castagna creates for the program. The program has an enormous amount of information that needs to be covered, much of it being rules and regulations. Charles incorporates varied methods of teaching, guest speakers and interactive conversation that made it meaningful and interesting, keeping everyone completely engaged. It is, without a doubt, one of the best courses for new attorneys and seasoned veterans alike. I highly recommend this class for anyone interested in learning this subject matter from one of the best.
Steven K. Teuber, Esq. Neaher & Teuber, PL Fort Myers, FL
Don’t go anywhere else. Ask around. Charles’ classes are uniquely entertaining with videos exciting guest lecturers, great fun, and a real sense of camaraderie with surprisingly good food. Meanwhile I was learning from the best. Check out his resume. I feel prepared.
Keith Brady Keith Brady, J.D. Founder & Former CEO of KGS
“Charles Castagna’s mediation training course has made me, without question, a better listener and probably a better lawyer. The course is well paced with lots of classroom interaction, films of actual and staged mediations and guest speakers who spoke of real life mediation experiences from the perspective of a “neutral”. Whether you’ve mediated one or one thousand cases as an advocate, until you’ve taken the training as a mediator you cannot put the full picture together. Professional life as an advocate in mediation versus as a mediator are often at odds and the training helps to sort that out. I highly recommend Charles’ course for all practicing attorneys.”
Walter W. Blenner, Esq. Blenner Law Group, P.A.
Charles, I wanted to take a minute and commend you on your mediation classes. I have attended two of your full day classes in Clearwater. Although I did so to obtain credits for recertification, attendance at your classes was not a chore, but far from it, an informative and entertaining endeavor. The interactive approach you use enhances the experience. I look forward to attending your classes in the future. All the best,
Charles Castagna is an engaging and hands on mediation instructor, with an interactive style, that makes even the driest portions of training entertaining. This is a long and time consuming training course which Charles makes not only tolerable, but enjoyable.
Andrew Needle Needle & Ellenberg P.A. 1401 Brickell Avenue, Suite 900 Miami, Florida 33131
I had the pleasure of attending the Civil Circuit certification course taught by Charles Castagna, and highly recommend him. When I first signed up for the course, I did not expect it to be anything I would enjoy – forty full hours for training that my 30 years of legal training (and arrogance) told me that was largely unnecessary. I could not have been more wrong. Charles made forty hours go by quickly, and I learned a great deal that I did not know. I would take the course again, and mark it down as one of the best seminars I have attended of any type. I know that what made the difference was Charles’ teaching style, which was to be highly engaged and informative. Charles made the difference and he has my highest recommendation.
D. Andrew Byrne Board Certified by the Florida Bar in Labor & Employment Law and in Business Litigation Admitted in New York, Florida and Tennessee
Bryant Miller Olive SunTrust International Center 1 SE 3rd Avenue Suite 2200 Miami, FL 33131
Our class had students from different walks of life and with varying amounts of expertise: a new attorney,experienced attorneys, experienced but uncertified mediators, and non-attorneys; and yet, we all learned something valuable, new, and concrete about the mediation process. Furthermore and miraculously, the five days of classes were fun! I recommend Charles’ class to anyone who wants to become a mediator.
School Board Member, District 8 Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Thanks so much for the outstanding mediation certification course. Before I enrolled, I was concerned about the amount of time that it would take; however, the lively nature of the class made the time go very quickly. More importantly, the tools that I learned in your program will not only prove invaluable when and if I do decide to become a mediator, but also in helping to understand better the psychology of mediation when representing my clients, now, as an advocate. Again, Charles, thanks for an enjoyable and enlightening experience.
Fredric S. Zinober, Esq., BCS.
Board Certified Civil Trial Lawyer
QUINTAIROS, PRIETO, WOOD & BOYER, P.A.
I recently took the Circuit Civil Mediation Training Class with Charles Castagna and it even surpassed my expectations, which were already high since his course had been recommended to me by a colleague! The hours and days flew by and I felt like I learned more in this 40-hour training than I ever have before in similar type trainings. He kept the class engaged, motivated, and made us all feel very comfortable. The atmosphere was conducive to participation and learning. I hope to have the opportunity to take another mediation training class with Charles.
I would recommend Charles Castagna’s CME course to mediators of any skill level. His teaching approach offered an insightful discussion on various topics.From a practical standpoint, Mr. Castagna was mindful of the participants’ time commitments in that he started and completed the course in a timely fashion. Although the CME is a required, Mr. Castagna has found a formula to make it positive and productive.
Bryan R. Rendzio, Esq. Florida Supreme Court Certified Circuit Civil Mediator Florida Bar Board Certified Construction Lawyer
Your Circuit Civil Mediation Course in Miami, Florida in December 2013 was educating and entertaining and thank you for allowing me to observe you during an actual mediation.
Not being an attorney, I found your morning lectures and discussions quite interesting, informative, and all of my attorney classmates kept the legal language and explanations understandable. I found the afternoon role playing even more interesting and engaging especially, after observing ten actual mediations, I can say now that the role playing was very realistic.
I enthusiastically recommend your course and encourage you to coordinate with mediators to provide an efficient system to assist new mediators to complete their required observations.
Conward S. Thompson
Col (Retired) US Marine Corps
“It is a very well organized and informative course. Charles Castagna is a great teacher and instructor and I learned a lot. I definitely recommend this course.”
Best regards, Gordon
–Gordon J. Schiff
Having litigated for over forty-five years and attended many meditations representing clients, I did not think that I had anything to learn, but I needed to do it to get my certification. I was wrong. I learned a lot. The course materials were comprehensive and well prepared. The forms are very helpful. Charles had a good group of well known mediators come to speak to us. He also created a good atmosphere where there was a lot of participation and good dialogue among those taking the course. Further, Charles’ insight from his extensive experience as a mediator was enlightening. I highly recommend his course.
I just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your mediation course last Friday. I found the morning discussions quite engaging and relevant. I also found both of the afternoon speakers to be absolutely amazing! I truly enjoyed the whole day and will be back again. I will recommend your course most highly to all the mediators I know.
Congratulations on putting together such an informative and entertaining course.
I recently took an in-class continuing mediation education course with Charles Castagna, Esq. The ministerial aspects from contact, to sign up to attendance were seamless. The setting of the class itself was professional, and like the classes I had taken from Charles previously, the program was organized, professional and had interesting speakers who delivered the content effectively. I highly recommend Charles and his team to new mediators or for those seeking their continuing education needs.
Richard T. Avis, Esq.
I learned a lot Charles, from you and from the other presenters. The videos were great, the lecturers were great and your teaching technique was great. I’m looking forward to getting started.
Howard C. Batt, Esq.
Charles Castagna is an outstanding instructor in mediation techniques. His presentation is interesting and creative. Moreover, he encourages participation by members of the class and has a very engaging manner of responding to comments. Simply put, his class is a very pleasant way to receive certification credit.
Murray A. Greenberg
Of Counsel, Stearns Weaver Miller, Miami
Retired Miami-Dade County Attorney
I wasn’t looking forward to spending time to take the mediation course for certification. But Charles Castagna is the best – he made the course fun and interesting, particularly with the role play exercises and his cast of excellent guest speakers. I’ve been mediating for years and thought that I had heard it all, but I learned so much from the course that I know I’ll be a better, more effective and thoughtful mediator as a result. Well worth the time and money!”
John S. Vento, Esquire
Your training course was engaging and creative. I have participated in a lot of legal education and usually find myself distracted. This training got me involved from start to finish and the time flew by. I am certain I will apply everything I learned during the course.
Attorney at Law
I have served as a mediator in numerous cases, some of them multi-party and many of them quite complex. Notwithstanding that experience, I found your course to have great substance and very beneficial. I am sure what I learned will aid me in the future.
Leonard H. Gilbert | Holland & Knight
BRANDON MEDIATION CENTER, INC.
221 E. Robertson Street
Brandon, FL 33511
Telephone (813) 685-4852
Stuart W. Umbarger
Supreme Court Certified Family Mediator
Supreme Court Certified County Court Mediator
IF YOU ARE A MEDIATOR ….AND ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE AN ATTORNEY/MEDIATOR….I WOULD STRONGLY URGE YOU TO TAKE A LONG, HARD LOOK AT THE ART OF ETHICAL & EFFECTIVE MEDIATION PRESENTED BY CHARLES N. CASTAGNA MEDIATION, INC. . I JUST ATTENDED “COURSE A”THIS PAST FRIDAY (9/14/2012) AND WAS MOST IMPRESSED BY THE ENTIRE PRESENTATION PROVIDED BY MR. CASTAGNA. HE NOT ONLY COMPILED A 3-RING BINDER CONTAINING ALL THE RELEVANT MATERIAL……..HE KNEW THE CONTENTS FORWARD AND BACKWARD SO THAT ANY TIME AN ATTENDEE HAD A QUESTION, CHARLES COULD QUICKLY AND CORRECTLY REFER TO THE CONTENTS AND DIRECT OUR ATTENTION TO THE RELEVANT INFORMATION. HE WAS WELL ORGANIZED AND IT SHOWED
AND YOU RECEIVE NOT ONLY 8 CREDIT HOURS FOR YOUR CME BUT, IF YOU ARE AN ATTORNEY, YOU ALSO RECEIVE 7.5 CREDIT HOURS TOWARDS YOUR CLE. WHAT-A-DEAL!!!!
HAVING BEEN AN ATTORNEY FOR MORE THAT 40 YEARS AND A CERTIFIED FAMILY/COUNTY MEDIATOR FOR ALMOST 18 YEARS, I HAVE ATTENDED MANY, MANY SEMINARS AND I CANNOT RECALL ANY LIVE PRESENTATION THAT WAS MORE IMPRESSIVE THAN THIS ONE. IT WAS GREAT!!!!!
(AND THE FOOD WAS GREAT TOO)
STUART W. UMBARGER
Five full days is a significant time commitment. Thank you for making your five day circuit civil mediation certification course worth the financial and time investment. Your course materials, discussions, and practice tips were excellent.
“Your mediation training was far and away the best that I have ever attended. In contrast to many, it was time efficient, well thought out, meticulously prepared, and informative. Note well that before attending your training, I would have thought the phrase “informative mediation training” to be an oxymoron.
I was most impressed with the materials that you prepared, which I intend to use in my own mediation practice, as well as with your attention to your students’ convenience and time. The facility was excellent, and your having both a continental breakfast and lunch brought in took maximum advantage of the opportunity to accomplish as much as possible in as little time as possible.
I have asked my assistant to make sure that in the future your training sessions have our highest priority in terms of which I attend. I appreciate very much your efforts, which, upon reflection, I should think typical of those of us who had the privilege to attend FSU Law.”
Again, many thanks.
C. Howard Hunter, Esquire
“Great seminar Charles. The time went by a lot faster than in other all day CME sessions.”
Howard W. Weber, Esquire
“I have attended an initial certification class as well as a CME course with Charles as the instructor and found both to be extremely interesting, informative and well presented. I highly recommend attending the courses presented by Charles.”
J. Suzanne Lehner, Esquire
“Charles Castagna is an outstanding mediator and mediation instructor. He has helped pioneer the mediator training process in Florida. His mediation course is invaluable to certified and prospective mediators. I highly recommend it.”
John Agliano, Esquire
“An excellent blend of cerebral and practical. Good materials and insight into the origins and application of the rules. A lot of substance in a comfortable environment. Highly recommended.”
Dennis M. Stotts, Esquire
“Excellent. Time went by quickly. Charles’ vast experience in the field is the reason his seminars are very informative. Very practical advice in application of the rules discussed. I will return in the future for CME credits.”
Rolando Guerra, Esquire
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